Tuesday, March 13, 2012

What Did You Miss This Week? (Week 259 #302)

Decoration Blues!!!

We mentioned Joe's thoughtful, informative handout called Filisko's B1 Survival Guide last week - he's updated it a little and even added the Jim Lucas Patented Method for Triplets study page. You can get it all here: Survival Guide.

The last song in the "Sonny Boy Study Series" is Decoration Blues, recorded March 13, 1938 - 74 years ago to the day!

These are terribly sad lyrics, backed up by fierce, low-down blues that make extensive use of the splits, dirty notes and vamping.

Joe used the song also to talk about "blues" and "blue" notes. He admits there is debate over use of the terms, but he thinks of it this way:

Blues notes are flatted notes in the scale - b3, b5, b7. These notes can all be played on a piano.

Blue notes are the "in-between" notes. Check out bar 10 of the first solo for a perfect example. Sonny Boy does not let that bent four draw all the way up to the natural four draw. Instead he "milks" the bend in that in-between space for beautiful dissonance! Joe's heard it called "worrying" a note, which is a cool way to phrase it! Just remember that wonderful dissonance has to go somewhere - be sure to resolve it!

Filisko & Noden and Tad Robinson Show This Week!!!
Don't admit out loud that you don't yet have tickets to this great show Sunday. Just sneak over to the SPACE website and buy some, quick, before they sell out!

Tad Robinson!!!

Speaking of Tad Robinson, he is coming to B1 this next Monday, March 19. If you're in the Chicago area and would like to stop by, please know that you're welcome. It's ok if you're not currently registered for class; come join us at 8:00pm!

Prepare to be amazed by incredible harp playing and monster vocal power!

Class Notes

  • Announcing! The next B1 Harmonica Recital at the Harlem Avenue Lounge will be May 12, 2012. Save the date and start working on your performance material.
  • Announcement Number 2! We have a date, location and headliner for our 5th Annual Chicago Blues Harp Bash! Sugar Ray Norcia will headline, backed by the Billy Flynn band and it all happens at SPACE on September 30, 2012! We're pulling together the other five harp players and will announce them soon!

Band Seeking Blues Singer/Harp Player!!!


We're an Old School Blues trio looking for Harp/Vocalist. Practice once a week gigs to follow. Have rehearsal space and PA. Little Walter, Jr Wells, Muddy, Butterfield, F King, BB King, William Clark, J Harman, West Coast,, etc. NW Burbs.


Thanks a bunch,
Pete Gisslen
Kelsy Harbor Blues Band

Chord Harps For Sale!!!

Our friend Bill Morris has two more rebuilt chord harps available for a steal at $450 each. Email him directly: Bill Morris

- Grant Kessler, B1 Blues Crew

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